BENJAMIN has now reached a stage in which he is ready to launch his first public project for doing good to his fellow men.
The Junto has solidly established itself and has, by a process of fission, given birth to several other similar clubs called the Vine, the Union, the Band, etc. Young Benjamin's sagacious mind soon discerns the advantages that lie in this method of organization. The Junto remains the mother club, and to it the younger clubs are required to report what goes on at their meetings. Thus Benjamin has a rare opportunity for keeping in touch with public sentiment and also. for influencing opinion when necessary.
The Junto has been able to move from its tavern quarters to a little room lent by Robert Grace. There books are often brought by members who wish to prove a point in a debate. Their gradual accumulation gives Ben an idea. He proposes that members club their books together so as to form a common pool or library which may be freely consulted by all. Accordingly one end of the room is soon filled. But after a time some of the books became damaged by careless use, and their owners withdrew them.
Ben then emerges with a scheme for a public subscription library. It is probably the offspring of his experience with Wilcox, the London bookseller, who permitted him, for a fee, to take out and return books. His keen observation of human nature teaches him to set about the project cannily.
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Publication information: Book title: Benjamin Franklin, the First Civilized American. Contributors: Phillips Russell - Author. Publisher: Brentano's. Place of publication: New York. Publication year: 1926. Page number: 129.
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